“Brockmire” is baseball’s favorite degenerate

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Often overlooked because it airs on IFC, season two of “Brockmire” arrived on April 25, and it continues to be one of the most hilarious and underrated television series’ currently on air.

“Brockmire” follows the outrageous and debauchery-filled life of Jim Brockmire, an iconic Major League Baseball (MLB) broadcaster who was fired by the Kansas City Royals for an on-air tirade in which he vividly recalls coming home to discover his wife hosting an orgy. He is played by Hank Azaria, who also created the character in 2010 for an episode of the Funny or Die web-series entitled “Gamechangers.”

Due to its success online, Azaria went on to make several appearances on other media platforms as Brockmire and began fielding movie offers. However, the proposals never came to fruition because he was embroiled in a lawsuit over ownership of the character with actor Craig Bierko, who argued that he helped create the character. Ultimately, the court ruled in Azaria’s favor and he was able to copyright the persona. Shortly thereafter, IFC ordered an eight-episode comedy series based on Brockmire and starring Azaria.

Season one debuted on April 5, 2017, with Brockmire now 10 years removed from his infamous meltdown and subsequent banishment from the MLB. In the meantime, he has been on an epic, decade-long drug- and alcohol-fueled bender, using his well-known voice in any possible way to make money, ranging from announcing cock fights in Thailand to starring in a low-budget Japanese sitcom. He has now resurfaced to take a job as the public-address announcer with the Morristown Frackers in an attempt rebuild his reputation and get back to the big leagues.

The Frackers are owned by Jules James, who is played by Amanda Peet. She hired Brockmire solely as a publicity stunt to help generate enough income to prevent her team from being absorbed by the local oil conglomerate. He is under the assumption that the world has passed him by, which could not be more wrong. During his hiatus, the video of Brockmire’s infidelity-induced mental breakdown has become the most watched video on the internet, elevating his celebrity status to new heights.

Initially, Brockmire is less than thrilled with the fact that millions of people have been re-watching the worst moment of his life on repeat. But his narcissism quickly causes him to change his attitude, as does his burgeoning romance with Jules, who happens to have quite the passion for substance abuse herself. The duo then develops a symbiotic relationship, using each other’s goals to help achieve their own.

Along for the ride is the subtly hilarious teenage production assistant Charles. Portrayed by Tyrell Jackson, Charles has no real goals of his own besides finding a way to escape Morristown and his dysfunctional family. More often than not, he finds himself babysitting Brockmire as the two develop an unlikely friendship.

Although the plot of “Brockmire” is rather simplistic and predictable, the sheer chaos that is Jim Brockmire lends itself to seemingly limitless raunchy and perverted comedy. While this style is far from unique for modern television, the show is made exponentially more entertaining by Brockmire’s endless narration of his own life. He treats every situation like he’s broadcasting a baseball game, providing an audible play-by-play for everything from his drug use to his sex life.

As a sports addict, one of my favorite elements of the series is the inclusion of several famous real-life broadcasters. Among those to make a cameo are Brockmire’s rivals Joe Buck and Brent Musberger. Whenever he is in the presence of either man, there’s a strong chance a fight will break out. In addition, Brockmire and Musberger are embroiled in a career-long “prank war,” which Musberger has recently elevated by defecating in Brockmire’s hotel bed. I found it immensely amusing to see two legends of the industry so far removed from their carefully curated TV personalities.

Season two of “Brockmire” has the potential to be even more outrageous, as the setting has shifted to New Orleans, Louisiana. With the fate of the Frackers no longer in the balance, Brockmire is now a promotion away from returning to the MLB and is currently employed by the AAA affiliate of the Atlanta Braves. Jules remains in Morristown, but Charles has finally escaped and follows Brockmire to his new city, where the two are roommates. Brockmire’s popularity has skyrocketed, and he has appointed Charles as the CEO of his new corporation so that he can focus on cultivating his numerous vices.

Though “Brockmire” does focus largely on baseball, you certainly do not have to be a sports fan to enjoy the show. However, a strong sense of humor and an appreciation for societal taboos should be considered a prerequisite for any prospective viewers. For those who fit this description and are interested, the entire first season is available on Hulu. Even if you’re only mildly intrigued, at least give the opening scene a watch. I guarantee it will either become your new favorite show or you’ll be so offended that you will never want to see Azaria on your screen again.